Sunday data/statistics link roundup (3/17/13)

  1. A post on the Revolutions blog about an analysis of the worldwide email traffic patterns. The corresponding paper is also pretty interesting. The best part is the whole analysis was done in R. 
  2. A bill in California that would require faculty approved online classes to be given credit. I think this is potentially game changing if it passes - depending on who has to do the approving. If there is local control within departments it could be huge. On the other hand, as I'll discuss later this week, there is still some ground to be made up before I think MOOCs are ready for prime time credit in areas outside of the very basics.
  3. A pretty amazing blog post about a survival analysis of RuPaul's drag race. Via Hadley.
  4. If you are a statistician hiding under a rock you missed the NY Times messing up P-values.  The statistical blogosphere came out swinging. Gelman, Wasserman, Parker, etc.
  5. As a statistician who is pretty fired up about the tech community, I can get lost a bit in the hype as much as the next guy. I thought this article was pretty sobering. I think the way to make sure we keep innovating is having the will to fund long term companies and long term research. Look at how it paid off with Amazon...
  6. Broman on interactive graphics is worth a read. I agree that more of our graphics should be interactive, but there is an inherent tension/tradeoff in graphics, similar to the bias variance tradeoff. I'm sure there is a real word for it but it is the flexibility vs. understandability tradeoff. Too much interaction and its hard to see what is going on, not enough and you might as well have made a static graph.
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  • http://www.biostat.wisc.edu/~kbroman Karl Broman

    Thanks for the mention. I see your point about the tradeoff: Call it easy vs. deep. I lean heavily towards deep. If we require data visualizations to be immediately understandable, there's little room for innovation.